Economics Minister: Habeck: Become less dependent on raw material imports

Economics Minister
Habeck: Becoming more independent of raw material imports

The new Economics and Climate Protection Minister Robert Habeck (Greens) during his first speech in the Bundestag. Photo: Michael Kappeler/dpa

© dpa-infocom GmbH

The to-do list of the new climate protection and economics minister Habeck is extensive. The fight against global warming is also an opportunity for the economy, he advertises in the Bundestag.

In view of the rising energy prices, Germany has to become more independent of raw material imports from the point of view of the climate protection minister Robert Habeck (Greens).

For this, renewable energies from wind and sun would have to be expanded much faster, Habeck made clear on Thursday in his first speech in the Bundestag. Habeck spoke of a global “hunger” for the fossil fuels gas, oil and coal. This drives prices up. He referred to the planned relief for electricity customers through the abolition of the EEG surcharge from 2023 and a “fair levy” of the CO2 heating cost surcharge between tenants and landlords.

In the medium term, the best strategy is to become independent of fossil fuels. This also offers enormous opportunities for innovation potential in the German economy and prosperity.

Habeck had announced comprehensive immediate measures so that climate goals can be achieved. Renewable energies from wind and sun are to be expanded significantly. The cabinet should pass a first legislative package by Easter.

The minister also announced efforts to speed up planning and approval procedures. It takes an average of six to eight years to approve a wind turbine. “You don’t have to be particularly bright or pay attention to math at school to realize that it can’t work.”

The conversion of the economy – for example the steel industry – to CO2-free production processes requires large quantities of hydrogen and the corresponding technology. Habeck emphasized that he did not want to complain about the difficulties, but rather see opportunities for improvement. He wants to cultivate a style of cooperation. “It would be best if those who implemented the best concepts the fastest and didn’t make life as difficult as possible for the others would win.”

The economic policy spokeswoman for the Union faction, Julia Klöckner (CDU), explained: “We offer you, as the opposition, constructive, critical cooperation.” However, she accused Habeck of putting the concerns of the economy and companies aside in his climate protection efforts, and spoke of a “green planned economy”. Klöckner demanded: “Wherever it says Minister of Economics, Minister of Economics must also be inside.” In addition, digitization must be promoted. “Make economic policy a top priority.”


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